CHICAGO (CN) – The Center for AIDS Prevention is soliciting money in Illinois though its nonprofit registration was revoked 20 years ago, Attorney General Lisa Madigan says. The state says the group tried to reregister as a nonprofit using a phony Chicago address, though its boss, Morrell Neely, lives in Riverside, Calif.
Madigan demands that Neely disgorge all the money he and his organization collected in Illinois.
Neely sought donations recently on the Chicago Tribune and Daily Herald Web sites, according to Madigan, and asks for money on his organization’s Web site.
But a 1987 letter from the Illinois Attorney General informed Neely that his nonprofit registration was being canceled immediately and it would be illegal for him to seek donations in Illinois, because he made false statements on registration forms that year.
The state dissolved the CFAP in 1988. In 2007, the state says, Neely tried to “reinstate CFAP as an Illinois not-for-profit corporation” by using a fake Chicago office address. It listed Neely as the Center’s registered agent for Illinois on its 2008 annual report, but Madigan says that Neely lives in Riverside, Calif., the Center is in Beverly Hills and there is no registered office anywhere in Illinois. Madigan says that the CFAP had not been legitimately active in Illinois for 19 years.
Madigan claims the CFAP holds a certificate of incorporation that was fraudulently obtained. She asked the Cook County Circuit Court dissolve the corporation.
Madigan also demands a constructive trust that will send the CFAP’s Illinois donations to “one or more bona fide charitable organizations.